Monday, February 18, 2013

Mini Book Review: The Long Emergency

The Long Emergency by James Howard Kunstler

The full title The Long Emergency: Surviving the End of Oil, Climate Change, and Other Converging Catastrophes of the Twenty-First Century

Cheap fossil fuels has made the USA the country it is. However, the days of inexpensive and unlimited fossil fuels are already showing that the well (pun intended) is running dry. Scraping the barrel (another pun) to get the last fossil fuel out of the ground with fracking is an example of getting that fuel.

However, no natural resource will be available forever. There are limits. Peak oil occurred in the US about 1970. Depending on the source of information, the world is at peak oil now -- plus or minus ten years.

It really doesn't matter when fossil fuels run out. They will. That is what Kuntsler relates in his book. Time to prepare for the downhill run (The Long Emergency) as fossil fuels become less available and more expensive. In order to create alternative energy sources such as solar, wind, tidal, nuclear, etc, fuels are needed in the manufacturing process. Time to build those systems while fuel is still available.

However, nothing powers the auto like refined fuels. When fossil fuels are gone, we might have to resort to horses for transportation. Or even walking. Wow.

A readable book and worth the time whether you want to believe in peak oil -- or not.

James Howard Kunstler writes weekly at ClusterFuck Nation

Other sites recommending preparedness in a changing world:

Check US Energy Information Administration for:


  1. I'll believe in Peak Oil when we see evidence of Peak RV, that is, the average RV falling back to under 20000 lbs. (semi-grin)

    1. Whew. Made the cutoff of 20000 lbs. My truck and trailer weighs in at 19000.


    Not a new concept. Just when the peak is upon us, someone finds more oil/gas (or a way to get more out of known resources). Eight years since the above article and billions in taxpayer $ spent on solar/wind technology. While I absolutely love solar panels when I'm boon docking, I'm still waiting for a solar panel system that can propel my 22,000 pound RV. Not holding my breath.

    1. Nothing has been found to replace refined fuels to propel an RV or any internal combustion engine.

  3. The sky is falling! The sky is falling! it really, really is!!!!!!

    If we just raise taxes and increase government regulation and follow Enron's grand plan to trade "thin air", WE CAN ALL BE SAVED!


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